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The History of Mathematical Tables – From Sumer to Spreadsheets - Oxford Scholarship Online
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The History of Mathematical Tables: From Sumer to Spreadsheets

Martin Campbell-Kelly, Mary Croarken, Raymond Flood, and Eleanor Robson


The oldest known mathematical table was found in the ancient Sumerian city of Shuruppag in southern Iraq. Since then, tables have been an important feature of mathematical activity; table making and printed tabular matter are important precursors to modern computing and information processing. This book contains a series of chapters summarizing the technical, institutional, and intellectual history of mathematical tables from earliest times until the late 20th century. It covers mathematical tables (the most important computing aid for several hundred years until the 1960s), data tables (e.g., ... More

Keywords: mathematical tables, Shuruppag, mathematical activity, table making, printed tabular matter, modern computing, information processing, data tables, Census tables, spreadsheet

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2003 Print ISBN-13: 9780198508410
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198508410.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Martin Campbell-Kelly, editor
Department of Computer Science, University of Warwick

Mary Croarken, editor
Visiting Fellow, Department of Computer Science, University of Warwick

Raymond Flood, editor
University Lecturer in Computing Studies and Mathematics, Oxford University Department for Continuing Education; Fellow of Kellog College